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Elsecar Heritage Railway is delighted to announce it has bagged £4,640 from a Tesco funding scheme.

 

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its Bags of Help funding initiative, which sees grants of up to £5,000, £2,000 and £1,000 – all raised from the 5p bag levy – being awarded to thousands of local community projects every year.

Millions of shoppers voted in stores up and down the country. And it can now be revealed Elsecar Heritage Railway has been awarded £4,640.

Work will now begin on bringing the project to life.

The money will be used to improve the infrastructure at Smithy Lane Level Crossing, near Cortonwood in Barnsley. At Smithy Lane the original rails from the old coal mining line are still in the road, but these now are badly worn and are six inches lower than the rest of the track, therefore they need to be replaced. This money will help to buy new 60 foot rails, sleepers (the concrete supports the rail sits on) and other components needed to make the track in good order. This important step will allow engineering trains to cross the road and access Cortonwood.

Michael Daughter MP says; “As a patron of Elsecar Heritage Railway, I'm delighted that Tesco is supporting this fantastic project. The money will help with the plan to extend the line to Cortonwood and build on the success of this wonderful piece of history which is one of our top attractions in Barnsley.”

Elsecar Heritage Railway’s Chairman, Andy Earl, says; “We are so grateful for the support of Tesco and the local community who voted for us. This grant will help considerably to meet expensive infrastructure costs at an important stage of our railway extension project. As Tesco says “Every Little Helps” to get us a step closer to reopening the line to Cortonwood.”

 Lindsey Crompton, Tesco’s Head of Community, said: “Bags of Help has been a fantastic success.

“We’ve been overwhelmed by the response from our customers. The great thing about Bags of Help is that local people are invited to decide how the money will be spent in their community. We can’t wait to see the projects come to life.”

Voting ran in stores throughout January with customers choosing which local project they would like to get the top award using a token given to them at the check-out.

Since launching in 2015, Bags of Help has awarded more than £27 million across more than 3,500 local projects.

Tesco customers will get the chance to vote for three different groups each time they shop. Every other month, when votes are collected, three groups in each of Tesco’s regions will be awarded funding.

Bags of Help criteria have recently been extended to include any project that benefits the community. Previously the scheme funded outdoor projects only.

Groundwork’s National Chief Executive, Graham Duxbury, said: “Bags of Help continues to fund thousands of projects across the UK. We want to ensure that the money raised benefits as many local people in as many different places as possible so we’ve extended the range of groups and projects that we can support.

“The scale and variety of activities supported by Bags of Helps shows what can be achieved when communities are given the support and the encouragement they need to make change happen in their local area.”

Funding is available to community groups and charities looking to fund local projects that bring benefits to communities. Anyone can nominate a project and organisations can apply online. To find out more visit www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp

Ends

Issued by Elsecar Heritage Railway

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NOTES TO EDITORS:

• Bags of Help is supported by money from the five pence charge levied on single-use carrier bags.

• So far Bags of Help has awarded over £27 million to more than 3,500 local community projects.

• For more information please visit: http://www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp

• For more information on the railway extension visit: https://www.elsecarrailway.co.uk/index.php/about-us/our-extension